Our Trailblaze intern Ruby-Ann describes her three month stint with Brighter Sound, helping us plan and develop projects and speaking on our behalf at conferences.
In June this year I took part in the Kraft/Work programme – a four-day initiative specifically designed for creative students to develop their post-study careers. Guest speakers and creative educators held expert workshops and training for participants to learn all about what it takes to succeed in creative careers. On the final day of the programme, students had the opportunity to pitch to a panel of creative organisations – with a chance of winning a 12-week internship with one of the them.
I rambled my way through my presentation, missing every point I intended to make and feeling the strong desire for the ground to swallow me up. Turns out it couldn’t have been all bad as – to my surprise – I was chosen as one of five Trailblaze interns. When I found out I’d actually been chosen by multiple employers, I was absolutely speechless! Brighter Sound was my first choice – I was delighted to be able to spend 12 weeks with them at their offices in Manchester. The news gave me the boost of confidence I needed – embarking on the world of (proper) work for the first time is such a daunting experience.
“My first impression of the team was the overriding sense of how passionate they are”
On the first day of my internship, I was anxious to make a good impression – armed with my laptop, my lunch bag and my enthusiasm pinned to me like a gawdy birthday badge I set to work feeling optimistic. My first impression of the team was the overriding sense of how passionate they are as individuals about the work that they do. Their wealth of collective knowledge and experience undoubtedly influence their day-to-day work in the office – and it was such an inviting and exciting environment to be thrust into.
In the coming weeks, being around the women in the office was a great inspiration, especially as the creative industry on the whole has less women at its forefront. Debra, Rebecca, Kate, both Lucy’s, Andrea and Laura make creative decisions on a daily basis. Having this sort of representation has given me the courage to drive forward the ideas I envisage for my future in creative practice and education.
During the time I have spent at Brighter Sound, I’ve used many of the skills developed on my English and Creative Writing degree at Manchester Metropolitan University – to think critically, plan, research and to edit my work. I felt thankful for a tutor in foundation year who insisted I did at least four edits for each piece of work. I had begrudgingly accepted the task thinking what a waste of time it was. What I didn’t realise then is that these transferable skills were the ones that would ensure I was capable and equipped to manage in the future.
“The Trailblaze internship has given me the chance to explore my creativity”
The next few weeks saw me taking part in creative meetings, board meetings, planning and researching for projects, emailing proposals for potential collaborations and delivering a speech on behalf of Brighter Sound for the Music Mark Conference at the Royal Northern College of Music. The Trailblaze internship has given me the chance to explore my creativity, hone my public speaking skills, work effectively in a team and experience a creative organisation first hand.
As a final year student feeling not quite ready to graduate yet, it was essential for me to have some knowledge of a creative workplace before I finished my degree. Knowing more about what possibilities are out there and securing positive connections with future employers has been an invaluable opportunity that will forever remain a notable moment in the beginnings of my career in the creative sector.
Ruby-ann’s internship was delivered through Trailblaze, in partnership with Curious Minds.
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